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Author Topic: ABANDONING USELESS AND UNNECESSARY THINGS | IBNU RAJAB AL-HANBAL  (Read 65 times)

Izhr'ud Dn

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بِسْمِ اللّٰهِ الرَّحْمٰنِ الرَّحِيمِ
اَلْحَمْدُ للهِ وَحْدَهُ، وَالصَّلاةُ وَالسَّلامُ عَلَى مَنْ لَا نَبِيَّ بَعْدَهُ، وَبَعْدُ

Abandoning Useless and Unnecessary Things
Ibnu Rajab al-Hanbal Rahimahullh[1]

Hadth Twelve

Ab Hurayrah (may Allh be pleased with him) reported that the Messenger of Allh (peace be upon him) said,

Part of the perfection of a person's Islam is his leaving that which is of no concern to him.[2]

A good (hasan) hadth recorded by At-Tirmidhy and others in that fashion.

This hadith is one of the great principles from those on manners.

The Meaning of the Hadth

The meaning of this hadth is that part of perfecting one's Islam is that the individual should avoid whatever actions and speech that don't concern him, limiting himself only to those words and actions which do. In this context, the definition of what concerns him is that which is related to his interests, as well as those things which he seeks and desires. Concern is a deep interest in something. It is said that a person is concerned about something if he is interested in it and desires it. However, this does not mean that one should leave that which does not interest him or that which he doesnt want according to his whim or personal desire. Rather, it must be according to Sharah and Islam, and for this reason Allh defined it as part of the perfection of Islam. Thus, if one perfected his Islam, he would leave the words and actions which do not concern his Islam. Just as Islam necessitates performing the obligatory duties, leaving what is unlawful is also included in the perfected Islam which is praised in this hadth. This was mentioned by the Prophet (peace be upon him), The Muslim is he from whose hand and tongue the Muslims are safe.[3]

Perfection of ones Islam requires avoiding all that does not concern him, whether from the unlawful, doubtful, disliked, or superfluous permissible acts for which there are no need. By leaving all of these concerns, the Muslim has perfected his Islam and reached the degree of Ihsn (and it is to worship Allh the Exalted as if he sees him and if he doesn't see him then he [is sure that] He sees him).

So, whoever worships Allh in the state of remembering His closeness and attendance with his heart, or remembering Allhs closeness to him and His acquaintance of him, has perfected his Islam. This causes him to avoid all that does not concern him in Islam and to perform the deeds that concern him.
 1. Ibn Rajab, Jami Al-Ulm Wal-Hikam, Umm Al-Qura Publications, P. 157-163. I corrected some mistakes found in the translation.
 
 2. Recorded by At-Tirmidhy in Kitb Az-Zuhd (Book on Asceticism) no. 2317; also recorded by Ibn Mjah in Kitb Al-Fitan (Book on Tribulations).
 
 3. Recorded by Al-Bukhry in Kitb Al-lmn (Book on Faith) no. 10; also recorded by Kitb Al-Imn (Book on Faith) 40/64 from the hadth of Abdullh bin Amr.
Shaykh'ul Islm Ibnu Taymiyyah Rahimahullh stated,

والعالم يعرف الجاهل؛ لأنه كان جاهلا، والجاهل لا يعرف العالم لأنه لم يكن عالما

"The lim (scholar) recognizes the Jhil (ignorant) since he was once a Jhil. The Jhil does not recognize the lim since he has never been an lim." (Shaykh'ul Islm Ibnu Taymiyyah, Majm'ul Fatw, 13/235)

Izhr'ud Dn

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The main thing intended by shunning what is not ones concern is protecting the tongue from idle talk. Allh the Exalted says,

وَلَقَدْ خَلَقْنَا الْإِنْسَانَ وَنَعْلَمُ مَا تُوَسْوِسُ بِهِ نَفْسُهُ وَنَحْنُ أَقْرَبُ إِلَيْهِ مِنْ حَبْلِ الْوَرِيدِ. إِذْ يَتَلَقَّى الْمُتَلَقِّيَانِ عَنِ الْيَمِينِ وَعَنِ الشِّمَالِ قَعِيدٌ. مَا يَلْفِظُ مِنْ قَوْلٍ إِلَّا لَدَيْهِ رَقِيبٌ عَتِيدٌ.
which means (And indeed We have created man, and We know what his own self whispers to him. And We are nearer to him than his jugular vein [by our knowledge]. [Remember] that the two receivers [recording angels] receive [each human being], one sitting on the right and one on the left [to note his or her actions]. Not a word does he [or she] utter but there is a watcher by him, ready [to record it]) (Qf; 50: 16-18)

Umar bin Abdl-Azz (may Allh be Merciful with him) said, "Whoever reckoned his words as part of his actions would speak very little. This is true, for many people do not consider that their speech is from their actions. Thus, they speak recklessly, not paying attention to their words. This was unknown to Mudh bin Jabal until he asked the Prophet (peace be upon him) about it, saying, Will we be held accountable for what we say? So he answered, O Mudh, may your mother be bereaved of you. Is there anything that topples people on their faces or their noses into Hell-fire other than what their tongues reap?[1] And Allh thus negated good from much of what men speak secretly about. For Allh says,


لَا خَيْرَ فِي كَثِيرٍ مِنْ نَجْوَاهُمْ إِلَّا مَنْ أَمَرَ بِصَدَقَةٍ أَوْ مَعْرُوفٍ أَوْ إِصْلَاحٍ بَيْنَ النَّاسِ
which means, (There is no good in most of their secret talks save (in) him who orders charity and righteousness, or conciliation between mankind. As for him who does this, seeking the good pleasure of Allh, We shall give him a great reward) (An-Nis; 4:114)

It is narrated on the authority of Anas that he said, A man from among the companions of the Prophet (peace be upon him) died; so a man asked, Rejoice with the good news of Paradise! So the Prophet (peace be upon him) answered, You wont be able to know, for it might be that he spoke about what didnt concern him or was stingy with what would not make him rich.[2] The meaning of this hadth was narrated in different forms from the Prophet (peace be upon him); and in one of them it says that the man was killed as a martyr.
 1. Recorded by At-Tirmidhy in Kitb Al-Imn no. 2616 who said it is good authentic (hasan sahh); also recorded by Ahmad in his Musnad, no. 5/231,236.
 
 2. Recorded by At-Tirmidhy in Kitb Al-Imn no. 2316 who said it is odd (gharb) hadth; also recorded by Ab Yal as is in Majma Az-Zawid 10/302,303.
Shaykh'ul Islm Ibnu Taymiyyah Rahimahullh stated,

والعالم يعرف الجاهل؛ لأنه كان جاهلا، والجاهل لا يعرف العالم لأنه لم يكن عالما

"The lim (scholar) recognizes the Jhil (ignorant) since he was once a Jhil. The Jhil does not recognize the lim since he has never been an lim." (Shaykh'ul Islm Ibnu Taymiyyah, Majm'ul Fatw, 13/235)

Izhr'ud Dn

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Amr bin Qays Al-Maliy narrated that a man was walking with Luqmn when there were other people with him. So, he said to him, Arent you the slave of such and such a tribe? He replied, Yes. Then he asked, Arent you the one who used to take the animals to graze on such and such a mountain? He said, Yes. So he asked him, So what brought you to the state in which I now see you? He answered, True speech and long silence with regard to what does not concern me. When one of the companions was dying, they entered upon him and found that his face was shining. When they asked him the reason for his shining face, he said, I have no deeds on which I am secure except for two characteristics: I did not used to speak about what doesnt concern me; and my heart was clean towards the Muslims. It was also said by Sahal At-Tustary, Whoever speaks about that which doesnt concern him has been deprived of truth.

Perfection of Islam

This hadth indicates that leaving what is not of ones concern is part of perfecting his Islam. If he leaves what does not concern him and performs all that does concern him, he will have completed the perfection of his Islam. Other hadths have mentioned the virtue of perfecting ones Islam and that it causes ones good deeds to be multiplied, and conceals ones evil deeds. The apparent meaning of the hadth is that the multiplication of one's deeds is based on ones perfection of Islam.

It was related on the authority of Ab Hurayrah, that the Prophet (peace be upon him) said, If one of you makes his faith excellent, he will have recorded for every good deed ten-fold to seven hundred fold. And for every evil deed he does, he will have recorded on similar to it, until he meets Allh.[1]

Thus the increase of good deeds by ten-fold is absolute, and the increase beyond that depends on the perfection of ones Islam and the sincerity of the intention and the need for the deed and its virtue, such as paying the expenses of Jihd, Hajj, ones relatives, orphans, and the poor when they are in need of financial support.

It was narrated on the authority of Ab Sad that the Prophet (peace be upon him) said, If a servant accepts and completes his Islam, Allh will record for him every good deed that he performed, and erase for him every evil deed that he did before [his Islam]. Then everything after that will be according to retribution. For every good deed, he will have recorded ten-fold up to seven hundred fold. And for every evil deed he will have recorded similarly [one] for it, unless Allh overlooks that for him.[2]

The meaning of the good and evil deeds done previously are those deeds which he did before Islam. This indicates that he is rewarded for the good deeds which he did while he was a disbeliever if he enters Islam, and the evil deeds which he did are erased if he enters Islam. However, the condition for this is that he perfects his Islam and avoids those evil deeds as a Muslim.

This is indicated by the hadth narrated in Sahh Muslim on the authority of Ibn Masd who said, We said, O Messenger of Allh, will we be held accountable for our deeds in the times of Ignorance [before Islam]? The Prophet said, As for anyone of you who perfected his Islam, he will not be held accountable for them. However, he who degrades his Islam will be held accountable for his deeds in Ignorance and in Islam.[3] And it was recorded on the authority of Amr bin Al-s that when he entered Islam, he said to the Prophet (peace be upon him), I want to make a condition. So the Prophet asked, What condition [do you want to make]? He said, That [all my sins] will be forgiven for. So the Prophet said, Didnt you know that Islam abolishes all which was before it?[4]

It is related on the authority of Hakm bin Hizam who said, I said, O Messenger of Allh, do you think that there is reward for any of the deeds which I have done before my Islam, such as giving charity, freeing slaves or keeping good relations with my relatives? So the Messenger of Allh replied You have entered Islam with the good that you did previously. And in another narration attributed to him, Hakm bin Hizam said, I said, I swear by Allh, I will not stop anything which I used to perform before Islam, and that I perform the same in Islam.[5] This indicates that the good deeds of a disbeliever if he becomes a Muslim are rewarded, as was indicated by the previous hadith of Ab Sad.
 1. Recorded by Muslim in Kitb Al-Imn (Book on Faith) no. 129.
 
 2.  Recorded by An-Nasiy in Kitb Al-Imn (Book on Faith) no. 5013; also recorded by Al-Bukhry in Kitb Al-Imn (Book on Faith) in the chapter on (Perfection of an Individuals Islam) no. 41.
 
 3. Recorded by Muslim in Kitb Al-Imn (Book on Faith) no. 120/189.
 
 4. Recorded by Muslim in Kitb Al-Imn (Book on Faith) no. 121/192.
 
 5. Recorded by Muslim in Kitb Al-Imn (Book on Faith) no. 123/194-195.
Shaykh'ul Islm Ibnu Taymiyyah Rahimahullh stated,

والعالم يعرف الجاهل؛ لأنه كان جاهلا، والجاهل لا يعرف العالم لأنه لم يكن عالما

"The lim (scholar) recognizes the Jhil (ignorant) since he was once a Jhil. The Jhil does not recognize the lim since he has never been an lim." (Shaykh'ul Islm Ibnu Taymiyyah, Majm'ul Fatw, 13/235)

 

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